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It’s a headache for every SEO out there: when you’ve chosen the best selection of keywords, but still can’t make them rank. If you still haven’t done it, here is why you might want to strongly consider switching to a local domain name to achieve better rankings.
Re-calibrating your SEO campaign for your local area earns you higher quality traffic. If you are targeting the keyword ‘building cleaning services’ for a building maintenance outfit in Dubai, there is a chance the website is getting traffic and calls from Abu Dhabi, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm al-Quwain, and other emirates that do not qualify as suitable leads.
Geotargeting keywords is one of the most commonly used strategies to draw high quality traffic to a website. So instead of ‘building cleaning services,’ the cluster will have variations that include the keyword ‘Dubai.’
However, in some cases, this is not enough, in which case you can include the target location in your top-level domain. This essentially tells Google where the business is located, which can be incredibly useful in your SEO efforts. It can also help web users determine your relevance to their search with minimal interaction, which benefits your branding.
One of our clients, Dubai Translation Services (DTS), a linguistic services provider, has seen the benefits of changing from a .com domain to a .ae domain first hand. Prior to switching to a local domain, their website was not performing as well as expected after proper offsite and onsite work.
We had cleaned up their site, made sure the target pages had optimised content, implemented every onsite and offsite strategy in the book. On the average, though, only 7 out of 40 keywords were found ranking on the first page of Google.
We then considered switching to a local .ae domain. Since the client already had geotargeted keywords for their campaign, it was all a matter of enhancing their local SEO to signal their website’s local relevance to Google.
Our tech team set up a new domain for the client – making the switch from Dubai-Translationservices.com to Dubai-Translationservices.ae – and redirected all the old pages to the new ones, so traffic would immediately be sent to the new target pages.
The results were astounding: keyword rankings spiked to an all-time high of 29 out of 40 keywords on the first page of Google, within a few months. Adopting a local domain allowed us to boost the online marketing campaign of DTS by leaps and bounds. Now that is a tale of success worth sharing.